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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Miscellaneous

How To Detect Drunk Drivers

On: Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 2:29PM | By: Peter C Sessler

How To Detect Drunk Drivers test 2

Even with all the stigma attached to driving under the influence (DUI), public warnings, increasingly stiffer sentences, etc., people just don’t seem to get the message. Tens of thousands of people still die each year because of drunk-driving—and it could be anyone. You really can’t assume that there are particular classes of people who DUI.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has put together a booklet that lists visual clues that can be used to identify whether a nighttime driver is likely to be drunk or not, based on the results of field studies in which clues were observed in more than 4,600 patrol stops correlated with driver blood-alcohol concentrations (BAC). These clues or cues account for more than 90 percent of all DUI detections.

I‘ve listed the cues below. The number given with each visual cue is the probability that a driver exhibiting that cue has a BAC equal to or greater than 0.10.

From AMG To Amex: Mercedes-Benz Introduces Partnership With American Express

On: Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 12:57PM | By: Andrew W Davis

Mercedes-Benz Credit Card from American Express test 2

NOTE: The author does not hold himself out as providing any legal, financial or other advice, does not make any recommendation or endorsement as to any investment, advisor or other service or product, and does not offer any advice regarding the nature, potential value or suitability of any particular investment, security or investment strategy.

And as the author more than likely has neither the financial fortitude nor the credit score to qualify for a “regular” American Express card, let alone a Benz-branded oneand let’s not even get into affording an ACTUAL Mercedes-Benzconsider all financial choices carefully before investing on his snarky whim.

His lack of financial prowess aside, Mercedes-Benz IS a car company, so their decision to put their good name on Amex cards gives your favorite automotive editor/writer a reason to FINALLY cover a Wall Street Journal-style story. Sweet!

Alignment Basics

On: Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 10:51AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Alignment Basics test 2

With most car owners, a wheel alignment is something they get around to—eventually. Typically, that will be when they finally get around to replacing the tires or when the steering starts acting up to the point where it can no longer be avoided. The problem with wheels going out of alignment is that it is a gradual process. You might notice that your car will pull to one side or another on a smooth, flat highway or it might vibrate abnormally. Sometimes, though, if you hit a humongous pothole, you’ll feel the difference immediately.

Junkyards (Automotive Recyclers)

On: Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 2:10PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Junkyards (Automotive Recyclers) test 2

Over the years, I’ve bought parts from a number of automotive recyclers (junkyards) with excellent results. You can too! Considering the price of new parts, especially when you consider the cost of a brand new part, it makes good sense to get a used part. Why? Because you can save a lot of money, you’re helping the environment by recycling, and it can be fun, too. Of course, it depends what you’re looking for.

There are differences in junkyards. Some will let you wander through rows and rows of dead cars. Some won’t. Typically, if you’re looking for a specific part, call ahead and ask if they’ve got it. Some of the better organized ones inventory their parts while others will tell you they think they’ve got it in the “back” somewhere. Again, it depends what you’re looking for.

Of course, there is risk involved, depending on the part. You might spend a lot of time installing a part, only to find it doesn’t work. Even though most places guarantee the part (so you can exchange it), you’ve still invested a lot of time. There’s also the risk of injury if the part doesn’t work so it definitely doesn’t pay to buy certain junkyard parts. Let’s take a look at some of the parts and the risk you may be taking:


Oil Change Basics - You Can Do It!

On: Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 10:43AM | By: Peter C Sessler

Oil Change Basics - You Can Do It! test 2

The oil change is probably the most basic automotive procedure. You may ask, why bother, since it costs only $20-25 at the local service station. And sometimes, it’s even less at some of the big tire places.

Probably the best reason for doing it yourself is saving time. You don’t have to make an appointment or take the time out to drive to a service station. You also have the choice of installing whatever brand of oil filter you want and, just as important, whatever brand and type of oil you want. And once you get into the habit of changing your own oil, you’re apt to take the little extra time to check the rest of the car out.

The Chaos Theory As Seen In Today's Traffic Jams

On: Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 4:07PM | By: Peter C Sessler

The Chaos Theory As Seen In Today's Traffic Jams test 1-1

You’re driving along at a nice pace and all of a sudden, you see brake lights ahead of you, and traffic begins to slow. Probably an accident, you think. After an indeterminable time, traffic once again, begins to move. You keep your eyes open to see what caused the traffic to slow down, but you don’t see anything at all. It’s a bit frustrating not to have someone to vent your anger against, but as you probably have noticed, this is far from being uncommon. Traffic slows and speeds up with no apparent reason.

Don’t worry, though. There are people who make a study of this. Traffic engineers, who use mathematical and computer models, typically find that traffic jams are caused by accidents, bad curves, hills, merging lanes—all logical reasons. The way to alleviate this problem is to simply build bigger and better roads. Sounds logical, but is it?

How To Make Your Car Last Forever (Or Close To It)

On: Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 11:02AM | By: Peter C Sessler

How To Make Your Car Last Forever (Or Close To It) test 2

Some cars have a reputation for running forever, Hondas, for one, or some of those old Dodge Darts with the Slant Six engine. Even those cars, though, eventually make it to the junk heap. But don't get depressed; you can extend your car's life by following some rather simple procedures. Most of them seem very commonsensical, but the key is how often you do them. The following applies to all vehicles.

First, follow the service schedule. This seems pretty simple, but you'd be surprised how many car owners don't follow the manufacturer's maintenance schedule. Maintenance intervals are getting longer and longer, so it is, therefore, much more critical that they followed. A lot of cars today have warning lights to remind you, should you forget. Considering the investment most people make to own a car, it is inexcusable not to take care of it properly.

Quest For A Good Mechanic

On: Wed, Aug 24, 2011 at 1:00PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Quest For A Good Mechanic test 2

There’s no question about it, finding a good mechanic is about as hard as finding a good doctor or dentist—probably harder! At least with a doctor you’ve got some recourse, mostly legal, if there’s a problem. But with a mechanic, there’s not much you can do about it if you’ve been had.

The best source of information regarding reliable and professional service at fair prices (and with it, a measure of trust), is through word of mouth. But even if a shop gets rave reviews from your family or friends, it’s best to also find out if the facility specializes in certain types of cars, and how long the shop has been used by the person who made the recommendation.

Society Of Automotive Historians Sets The Date

On: Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 11:30AM | By: Chris Salamone

Jeff Mahl with the Thomas Flyer test 2

A car enthusiast, you say? What’s the difference between a member of the Society of Automotive Historians and your general car buff? The answer, it seems, is somewhat simple: professionalism. The folks down at the SAH take cars seriously. From books, to articles, to archives, the SAH exists for the sole purpose of exchanging knowledge about cars. Members have free access to their extensive resources and also receive the Society’s three publications: the SAH Journal, the Automotive History Review, and the ever-enticing Membership Directory (connecting members of similar interests around the globe). And most recently, the SAH released an announcement of the upcoming Annual Meeting in Hershey, Pennsylvania to be held October 7, 2011. Chocolate and cars, is there no greater glory?

Largest Display of James Bond Cars Ever Coming to U.K.

On: Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 9:24AM | By: Chris Weiss

Largest Display of James Bond Cars Ever Coming to U.K. test 2

James Bond is more than just a movie character; he's the epitome of manhood. To be cliche, women want him and men want to be him. What man hasn't watched a James Bond flick and fantasized, even just for a moment, about being a wealthy, debonair international hero that always gets the girl. And the car.

Yes, James Bond's famous wheels rival only his catch phrases and girls in defining the timeless icon. Whether it's the 1964 Aston Martin DB5 from "Goldeneye" or the 1999 BMW Z8 from "The World is Not Enough," the car was as much a main character as the actor driving it. Many of the world's hottest marquees—Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin, Bentley, BMW, Lotus and so on—starred in a James Bond flick at one point or another, and now the largest collection of those cars is coming to a U.K. museum exhibition.

The Most Underrated Car Of 2011!

On: Fri, Aug 19, 2011 at 12:34PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

The Most Underrated Car Of 2011! test 2

Driving along the mean streets of New Jersey a few days ago, I caught myself doing a double-take on the highway. Now, usually this type of behavior is perfectly acceptable for most cars that make more than 450 horsepower, or the occasional automotive rarity such as a Delorean or mint-condition late-80s Toyota MR2 solely due to their extreme uniqueness. But this particular neck turn wasn’t devoted to anything of the sort; in fact, I found myself very surprised at my own immediate visceral response. The car, believe it or not, was a brand new... wait for it... Indigo Blue Pearl Hyundai Elantra. Suffice to say, this was the biggest automotive surprise for this writer in all of 2011.

Yes, a Hyundai. No, not the sporty coupe. No, not even the high-end $65,000 Equus. No, what caught my eye was the $16,000 four-door Hyundai sedan. Seriously. And the sad part is that even as a writer, I am struggling to explain why it impressed me so, but that won't stop me from trying.